The integrity of our educational and research missions is critically important. Given that most of our daily activities are executed on or enabled by IT systems—from laptops and mobile devices to servers and high-performance computing platforms—threats to those systems endanger our mission.
Confronting these ongoing attacks and their inherent risks will require every member of our community's commitment and action. These requirements apply to any computer owned by HMS or purchased using grant funding, including laptops, desktop computers, servers, and software.
Requirements for allInstall security software and stay up-to-dateInstall software Update your OS
This software and these updates must be applied to any computer owned by HMS or purchased using grant funding. These systems include laptops, desktop computers, and software. These requirements, combined with two-factor authentication (2FA), help protect your data.
None of this software tracks or reports the data stored on your computer.
The requirements include:
- Systems management software (SMS) – Install systems management software (SMS) to enable HMS IT to keep systems up-to-date with the latest security patches and virus definitions. After you install SMS, the threat-monitoring software CrowdStrike will be automatically installed.
- Threat-monitoring software – Install CrowdStrike, which helps Harvard respond quickly to advanced attacks using malware and stolen credentials.
- Antivirus software – Install ESET antivirus software if you are quad-based faculty and staff. We recommend that others install Avast for macOS or use the built-in Microsoft Defender Antivirus for Windows computers.
- Updates to your computer's operating system and software – Immediately install updates that address security vulnerabilities. Apply other updates within 30 days of their release. To check if your system is up-to-date, review the HMS-supported operating systems.
Requirements for system administratorsEnsure your systems are compliantAdd 2FA Apply patches
- Secure administrative accounts used to manage HMS software or systems – Enable two-factor authentication (2FA) to secure all administrator accounts on the systems you manage.
- Enable 2FA for all users on any HMS software or systems you manage – Email email@example.com to request a security review of your authentication methods.
- Update your operating systems and apply patches to servers – Immediately install updates that address security vulnerabilities. Apply other updates within 30 days of their release.
- Remove internet access for outdated hardware and software – Block internet access to any system with hardware or software that the manufacturer no longer supports.
- Deploy vulnerability-scanning software – Uncover weaknesses across your systems by deploying CrowdStrike and Tenable® scanning software. Connect to a VPN to download this software, then email firstname.lastname@example.org for assistance configuring the software for your environment.